MOSCOW, July 9 (Reuters) - Russia's rouble-traded share index turned negative in the second half of the session on Tuesday, with the country's leading drugmaker the biggest decliner after it said it had taken steps to spin off its over-the-counter medicines business.
The rouble-denominated MICEX index erased its morning gain, trading down 0.4 percent, while the dollar-traded RTS index remained 0.5 percent up on the day.
Pharmstandard was down 8 percent at the close of trading after the company said it would buy back shares from investors who do not support a spin-off deal at 2,180 roubles, a 2.5 percent discount to its closing price the previous day.
The Russian company, majority owned by businessmen Viktor Kharitonin and Egor Kulkov, said on Monday it was planning to buy a Singapore-based company called Bever Pharmaceutical in a deal valued at $630 million.
Brent crude hit a three-month high of $107 per barrel on Monday and was steady on Tuesday, boosting Russia's currency.
The currency was 0.6 percent stronger at 33 against the dollar on Tuesday and also stronger against the dollar-euro basket at 37.23.
The rouble has performed strongly against the dollar compared with last week, when it hit its weakest in a year against the U.S. currency.
'Price action was fuelled by the generally positive trend in the emerging market forex spectrum... We believe that the relatively high crude oil price offered support to RUB,' VTB Capital said in a note.
(Reporting by Alessandra Prentice; editing by Megan Davies and Tom Pfeiffer) Keywords: RUSSIA MARKETS/
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